Firewire problems on Debian sarge

by Juliet Kemp

Last week I had to move (and therefore reboot) a machine running Debian sarge (stable) which has a couple of FireWire drives attached to it. Last time I did this it all came up beautifully of its own accord; sadly not this time. The logs showed the nodes being recognised by the ieee1394 module, but not actually being mounted.

As this machine is in fairly heavy use there was a limit to what I could try to get them back up again.

What worked eventually was:

modprobe -r ohci1394 sbp2 raw1394 eth1394 ieee1394
modprobe sbp2 ohci1394 raw1394

The script comes from Kurt Garloff and is available for download.

A significant downside to this method is that the drives wound up being recognised more than once. In this specific case: the first time, one drive was recognised once, the other one 8 times (!). Rerunning the script another time as I was writing this: the existing drives (2 actual drives, 7 'fakes') showed up again; but the first drive (the one that only appeared once before) was picked up a further 7 times. So I now have 2 real drives, and 14 fakes (7 of each, which at least is neat). Unfortunately as mentioned above this machine sees heavy use so I can't mess around further with this (e.g. by unloading/reloading the modules and running the script some more at various stages). (And it does work, in that the drives are mounted and accessible right now, so if it ain't broke...).

I am curious, though. This machine is about to be replaced with a superior solution, so I might get a chance to experiment in a few weeks.


Jeremy Jones
2007-02-08 09:13:00
Please keep us posted if you do get a chance to investigate that machine. I've had various levels of success/frustration getting a firewire camcorder working under the last 3 releases of Ubuntu.
jeremiah foster
2007-02-09 07:44:27
I too have had some issues but with USB stuff under Ubuntu, would love to hear what eventual outcome is and what tools you used.
Lawrence D'Oliveiro
2007-02-09 17:28:20
Have these same drives worked OK before? A client of mine has a couple of nNovia drives, and we can never get a Linux box to recognize those more than once without a reboot.
Juliet Kemp
2007-02-23 07:47:52
Lawrence: I haven't had cause to reboot this machine for a while, but I don't remember it being this level of hassle before!